Let the countdown begin! There are only 18 more days until I am officially married. As the day gets closer and closer and since I just left the fiancé in LA, I’m feeling in a nostalgic mood and figured I’d share our story,
Being of a literary mind, I never pined for the perfect man, but the perfect story. Something with a little drama, a little suspense, some laughs, but, in the end, a happy ending. Sound like something straight out of a Meg Cabot (or insert chick lit author of choice) novel? You bet. I feed on those things like some women feed on Disney.
So I am exceedingly happy to report that, not only is James the man I love, but he comes with a fantastic story as well. If I do say so myself.
Depending on who you ask, the story either beings 3 years ago OR 9 years ago. See, my best friend Rebecca decided that her friend James would be perfect for me and set us up on a blind date 9 years ago. As these things go, James had just gotten out of a relationship and wasn’t interested in dating at the time. So he did the most logical thing he could think of…and brought a friend. On the double date.
Needless to say, nothing happened.
Fast forward 6 years and you’ll find me bright eyed, fresh out of grad school, and ready to take DC by storm. Once again, fate, in the form of Rebecca, intervenes and says “Since you’re moving to DC and I have a ton of college friends in DC, let me take you to one of their parties and introduce you around!”
Of course I go along! Who’s going to say no to a pre-made friend group?
So I go and, of course, James is there. I don’t immediately make the connection between this James Anderson and the James Anderson who brought a friend on our blind date; I’m too busy making the connection between this James Anderson and the older brother of my good friend Matt Anderson. But eventually, after a good bit of flirting on both sides, it clicks.
He doesn’t remember a thing.
Now he’ll tell you that my bringing it up jogged his memory but, really, he has no recollection of our first “date.”
I tease him good-naturedly about this and he uses it, oh so cooly, as a segue into asking me out. As he is tall, blonde, handsome, and charming, I couldn’t help but say yes.
We proceed to date for about 3 months. Which is funny to me since, over those 3 months, 3 dealbreakers emerged for me:
- I didn’t want something serious.
- He did.
- And how do I put this nicely….He wasn’t serious about much except wanting a relationship.
So we ended things and vowed to stay friends, which turned out to be harder than I anticipated at the time.
You see, and lord this sounds self-centered, he never gave up on wanting to date me, going so far as to woo me…in front of subsequent boyfriends. I was not the biggest fan of this and always tried to keep him at arm’s length, but never out of the picture. I like to think that, deep down, I knew there was something special there just waiting for the right opportunity.
That opportunity came almost exactly 12 months ago. James realized he needed a change and enlisted in the Coast Guard. This made a world of difference in his life. He was still the goofy, funny, kindhearted guy I knew, but there was something more. A gravity and centeredness that was missing when we first met.
As cheesy as it sounds, with this new centeredness, he realized that the best thing he could do for our story was to actually be my friend. Not be “my friend that not so secretly wants to date me and lets everyone and their mother know,” but my true, honest to goodness friend who just wants what was best for me.
And, as cheesy as it sounds, that’s when I fell in love with him. When he gave me the space to see what we had and why it was special, I realized that there was a reason I was never able to fully extricate him from my life.
However, I wasn’t quite ready to declare us a couple again. I was still hesitant. Until last November.
Last November, I took my yearly business trip to Scottsdale, AZ. I did not mention this trip to James until the last minute and I did it in an offhand “oh my word I hate packing” kind of way. I didn’t mention it because I knew (ok I googled) that Scottsdale was 6-7 hours south of LA. There was NO WAY someone would make that trip.
I was wrong.
Not only did he drive the 6-7 hours to see me, he also rearranged his schedule so that he would have the entire weekend to spend with me.
I couldn’t pretend anymore. I was falling hard for this man, and he obviously felt the same way about me.
We officially started dating in November; began talking about marriage in early January; got engaged in March; and will be pseudo-eloping in 18 days.
I really have it all; a great man AND a great story.